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I loved the look and taste of my Osaka Purple mustard this past season. It bolted when the weather got warm, and made yellow blooms all over. Now, the blooms have formed seed pods. They look like thin green beans. I'm assuming they're seed pods. Anyway, my question is whether I should even try to harvest these seeds. I'd like to grow more, true Osaka Purples.
It is open pollinated, which means you can save seeds as long you don't have other similar brassicas blooming nearby. It is modern commercial cultivar so while I would not call it an "heirloom", definitions vary wildly.
it's sitting next to a Green Comet broccoli that is also blooming and beginning to make seed pods of its own. Will they cross-pollinate and hurt each other? It's the only Osaka Purple Mustard growing in the yard...
um, Farmerdill, this is my first season growing anything other than heirloom tomatoes...I really don't know anything, 'cept what ya'll are teaching me... I let the hybrid broccoli go to seed to see what the whole process looks like. I kept my eyes on the prettly little yellow flowers forever, wondering where the seeds were. Once I stopped looking, voila' there were seed pods! Cool. Again, I didn't know any of this before now.
Thanks. So I can finally cut down that broccoli 'cause those seeds will grow hair? LMK.
Um, I'll holler in the fall when I get ready to sow those Osaka Purple mustard seeds. Never grew any mustards (brassicas) from seed before. My first season, and I used seedlings.
Actually most of the time you will get good production from F2 hybrids. They just will not be true to the F1 cultivar. Most mustards do well direct sown. Certainly all of the B. juncea like Southern Giant Curled, Florida Broadleaf, Red Giant and the like. There are a lot of plants commonly called mustard that are different species even genus.
I have always planted either Florida Broad leaf or Southern Giant Curled. I love mustard boiled with hard fried bacon and a little bacon grease served with homemade vinegar hot pepper sauce and yellow cornbread baked in a big cast iron skillet.
I may like to try the Osaka Purple. Where did you get your seeds?
First off, the Osaka Purple is a beautiful plant in and of itself. I'd plant it just for the brilliant purple color and the curly texture of the leaves. Second, when eaten raw, this plant gets hot (capsacin?) as you chew it. The more you masticate the juices, the hotter it gets in your mouth. But -- and here's the fascinating part -- while you get all the taste of hot in your mouth, your mouth does not burn! And even though your brain is saying, "my mouth is on fire," once you stop getting the juices, you realize your mouth is not burning! It sorta reminds you of horse radish, and I imagine chewing a large piece would probably hit you just like a mouthful of horse radish (and, no, I haven't been that brave!)
Tiny pieces of the leaves would be great broken up in a fresh green salad.
But, the whole hot/taste thing doesn't happen once it's cooked. But, I like taking folks on walking tours of my veggie garden and having them chew on a tiny piece! They love it!
Hope this helps. I'll send you some seeds when I harvest them.
I've been watering the mustard plant. should I STOP watering to let it and the seed pods dry out? Once they do, them I can just break them open and harvest those tiny little mustard seeds? LMK. Thanks!
Whether or not to water would be somewhat dependent on conditions. I don't irrigate except for the kitchen garden in summer. My soil usually has plenty of moisture well into May. I would suspect Houston also has adequate rainfall this time of year. But if watering is needed, it can be withdrawn when the pods start drying ( turning straw color) I cut off the seed heads, store them in a shed for a couple of weeks until they are bone dry and then strip the seeds.
For those interested in red mustards, Osaka Purple is supposed to be an improved version of Japanese RED http://rareseeds.com/seeds/Oriental-Greens-and-Cabbages/Japanese-Giant-Red-Mustard
So, the pods will turn brown when they're ready to, in spite of the watering, and not because I withhold water? Ok. I think I might've already killed it (or it has died) cause it's toppled over (wind) right now and I didn't water it this weekend. I can still collect the seed pods and continue drying them out, right? LMK.